The Do’s and Don’ts of Stretching.

If I could do this - well, who would need a boyfriend?

If I told you that I knew something that could:

  • Boost your performance
  • Increase your flexibility (in bed)
  • Improve recovery
  • Decrease muscle soreness

Would you do it? Of course! So, what is this magic something? It’s called stretching.

The are two main types of stretching: Static stretching and dynamic stretching. Static stretching is when you elongate a muscle group and hold it for a period of time – like touching your toes for 30 seconds. Dynamic stretching uses movements that involve speed – like arm circles, leg kicks and everything else that you did in middle school gym class.

Over the years, I’ve become better – and wiser – about stretching.

For example, did you know that there is a bad time to stretch? Yup. Doing static stretching before strength training (i.e., lifting weights, resistance machines, etc.) will likely reduce your ability to lift by an average of 15%. Dynamic stretching, on the other hand, is fine before strength training. But the best time to stretch – believe it or not – is at the very end of your strength training routine when your muscle are tired and warmed up. Hold your static stretches for longer than 30 seconds to full take advantage of the benefits.

You also want to avoid stretching for cardio before you’ve warmed up. I always do a gentle jog on the treadmill for 3 minutes before stretching; it gets the blood flowing. Muscles are like Silly Putty. You have to warm it up to stretch it – otherwise, they snap.

The bottom line: Stretch for cardio once you’ve done a warm-up, and stretch again following your strength training routine at the conclusion of your workout. Those few minutes will prove to be a big investment into the success of your fitness program.

About Davey Wavey

Davey Wavey is a certified personal trainer and YouTube sensation with more than 250 million video views. For Davey's fitness tips and secrets, sign up for his free monthly newsletter - or download any of his affordable and effective workout programs.

Comments

  1. So which type of stretching do I need to do to be able to suck myself off and how often etc.? This is false advertising mr. Wavey!

  2. Did you know that only like 1% of all human men can suck their own dicks? When I was thiner I was actually able to do it. Turned a lot of guys on too haha.

  3. I know… But I hoped davey had a solution… Somehow when I look at his videos I just take his word for everything.. His body is hypnotizing I think…

    • Well first of all, being negative towards someone (ie accusing Davey of false advertising) is not a very good way to get his help.

      Second, the stretching advice in this article is NOT advertising. AND stretching is good for your flexibility so it’s also NOT false.

      • Dude, it was a joke. In his tweet he said he knew a way to teach yourself how to suck yourself off. He doesnt talk about this in his blog. That’s why I called it false advertising… And that (as many jokes are) not meant to be taken seriously…

      • yean, and for some people, maybe some other kinds of stretching may be useful, like stretching in the realms of possibility and perspectives 🙂

        As far as physical stretching goes, if one whats to be able to adopt contortionistic poses, gradually working towards those poses by persisting and practicing the stretching necessary to effect the pose is necessary.

        There is a lot of relaxing, and letting go involved in stretching, letting to of tension, tightness, inflexibility of body mind and spirit.

        Whatever practice you begin, be kind and gentle with yourself.

        • I need a spell checker 🙂

          corrections: yean = yeah
          one whats = one wants
          contortionistic = contortionist

          I’m stretching my vocabulary and dictionary 😉

  4. Q Perra !

  5. This is not entirely accurate. There is another stretching modality that does not fall within the dichotomy that you have described. It is called ‘Active Isolated Stretching’ and has been developed by a man named Aaron Mattes. it is based off of the physiologic laws of reciprocal innervation and the myotatic stretch reflex. If you are not familiar with it, Davey, I humbly suggest you check it out and, if possible, have a session done on you by an experienced therapist. It is VERY different from other stretching modalities. Be well.

    • Yes, there are many great types of stretching. As I mentioned in the article, dynamic and static are the two main types. But yes, I think it’s a great idea for a future post! Thanks!

  6. So my typical workouts right now are strength training first followed by cardio for 20 – 30 minutes. Right now I stretch right after I do cardio – would you suggest changing this at all? Also, any chance you could post a video or an article on a good stretching routine. Most of us (ok just me) are pretty lazy about stretching and do it almost as an after thought, so anything you can do to help would be most appreciated!

  7. I commend you Davey for making the point about dynamic and static stretching and when to use each. Many trainers still don’t get this, let alone the exercising public. Static stretching before lifting has been shown to increase the chance of injury. Use warm-ups (i.e. dynamic stretches) which mimic the activity to be done but at light loads. Static stretch as the last thing before hitting the showers, holding each stretch 20-30 seconds.

    Most men I observe do no stretching at all. They fail to embrace all the aspects of being fit. That is, cardio conditioning, strength, and flexibility. They vastly increase their chances for overuse injuries and become what we used to call “muscle-bound.”

  8. what you can do before some cardio when not warmed up are some motility excercises; what Davey calls dynamic stretching. It is important to take it easy and don’t go to full extension on anything.

  9. each time i used to read smaller articles or reviews that also clear their motive, and that is also happening
    with this post which I am reading here.

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  1. […] can still be very important, though it’s important to do it properly. Dynamic stretching (stretching with constant movement, like arm circles) is great before cardio or […]